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How to Grow Bearded Tongue

Penstemon Germination Information

Penstemon is the botanical name for Bearded Tongue
Penstemon Seed Germination How to Sow Penstemon:
  • Best sown indoors at alternating temperatures of 55 and 75°
  • Expect germination in 10-15 days for P. hartwegii; 30 days for P. barbatus and P. strictus
  • Seeds can also be sown outdoors in late fall or early spring
  • If sowing seed outdoors, we recommend a maximum planting depth of 4X the width of the seed

How to Grow Penstemon:
Transplanting: Transplant when there are at least two sets of true leaves

Spacing: Space plants 12-18 inches apart in full sun

Temperature Bee Balm is tolerant of humidity and insect pests

Soil: Use acidic to alkaline (pH 6.0 to 8.0), light, rich, perfectly drained soil

Additional Care: Very drought tolerant, in fact, success is assured if plants are kept dry once established

Appearance and Use:

Grown as bedding plants and as denizens of borders and rock gardens. Flowers cut well for fresh use. Penstemon barbatus is an upright grower to 6 feet tall with 1 inch long, red tinged pink, tubular flowers. It is a perennial native to the western United States and Mexico. Hardy from Zones 4 to 9. Penstemon hartwegii is an upright grower 2-3 feet tall with scarlet, drooping, tubular flowers. Native to Mexico, it is grown as an annual, but is perennial in Zones 9 to 11. Penstemon strictus, Rocky Mountain Penstemon, is an upright grower to 3 feet tall with dark-blue to violet flowers. It is a perennial native to the western United States and is hardy from Zones 3 to 8


About Penstemon:
Pronunciation:  pen’ste-mon
Lifecycle:  Perennial
Origination: Scrophulariaceae; native to North and Central America
Common Name: Bearded Tongue